Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday said "paid news" had become "menace" and media outlets should ensure "sensibility" in their news than focusing on "sensationalism".
"Paid news is not news. It has become a menace. It weakens the society. You (news outlets) have power to influence people, use it wisely," Naidu said after launching the Delhi edition of Marathi daily Lokmat here.
He also said that news should not be mixed with views.
"Information with confirmation is great ammunition. However, many channels are coming in the market. There is competition. But truth cannot be sacrificed," he said.
"Views should be restricted to editorial pages. There has to be sensibility and not sensationalism."
Media did have "right to break" anyone's sentiments, he added.
Naidu also appealed to journalists to focus on agriculture and rural issues as there were sentiments among people from rural areas that they were not getting attention.
"You (journalists) have to support them. You are their voice of downtrodden people and you take their issues to Delhi," he said.
He said regional languages should be respected saying he didn't feel content until he read a Telugu newspaper everyday.
Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Union Ministers Nitin Gadkari, Prakash Javdekar, Ravi Shankar Prasad, and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal were among the leaders who attended the edition launch ceremony.
Kejriwal said journalism had always faced difficulties and even today difficulties could be seen.